Friday, February 3, 2012

simple items found useful for tiny living

Today, I'll begin a short series for Friday's featuring a few items I've found helpful for use in a tiny living space. These items are tried and true in my own small house and so I pass them on to you for your consideration.

The first item is actually something I've been using since long before I knew what tiny living was fact I discovered them when I was living large in a 3 bedroom sprawling home in which the master bedroom took up one entire third of the house! (It was pretty awesome.)  This simple item comes in a variety of shapes and sizes: I present to you, the 3M Command Adhesive Hook.

I began using the medium plastic hook at holiday decorating time. I used them to hang stockings from the mantel without damaging the wood or paint afterward. I used them to hang the wreath on the door! These little hooks came in handy! But that's all I used them for...until I started living small. 

Then, they were everywhere. I had medium hooks inside the cabinet by the front door for the flyswatter and the dog's leash.

Then I used some small hooks near the stove - up high away from flame - to hang my potholders on. It was convenient and decorative. I hung a few up inside the cabinet near my side of the bed to hold my necklaces where I could easily choose them. I also found these handy for another purpose which I'll go into a little bit later. 

I needed a place to hang longer clothing - Dresses were a bit too long for any of the closets we had, so I found a free wall that was not to exposed and hung up a large hook. It didn't last long, I went beyond it's weight the large hooks were moved to inside the bathroom cabinets where they were used to hang the hairdryer and the hair iron out of site but easily accessible. 

So I tried the jumbo hook for the dresses and it worked for a little while...but I kept getting more dresses...and it gave out with a loud CRACK! Once again forced to hold far more than it was ever intended to. Still, it held up for at least a year!  So I put two of these on the same wall and sort of "layered" the dresses over each other - items on the top hook hanging over items on the bottom hook. This worked too for a while, until it didn't.
Enter the large metal hook! It is rated to handle less weight than the plastic jumbo hook, but for me it was the clear winner. Now that we have closets that fit my dresses, I use them on the bathroom door to hang our  towels on for drying between uses. This looks much better than those plastic "over-the-door" hook solutions and although they don't provide the extra hangar space, I never used that so I don't miss it. We do still use a couple of the over-the-door hangers, more on those later too.

In the beginning of living small, we had my 17 year old son still living at home and he desperately needed some privacy. Though I couldn't offer soundproofing, I could offer some semblance of his own space. I purchased some tabbed curtains, modified them with the help of a talented seamstress friend and used these mini hooks to hang the curtains without putting any holes in any of the wood or walls. They worked perfectly and created a solution that helped make things a little less miserable for a 17 year old living in a tiny house with his parents. (Looking back, I feel really badly that we went tiny before he was on his own. Don't do this to your teenagers, just don't.)

But what do you do when you have removed the last hook and you've run out of adhesive strips to hang them again somewhere else that they're most needed? I can't tell you how long I searched for an answer to that question and just last month I discovered refills of every size at Target. My husband was amused by my excited squeals but I'm not kidding you, I refused to buy new packs of hooks every time I needed new adhesive. Now I have them and can begin to use them here in our new living space without doing any damage to walls and wood and tile.
I keep the extras handy. I store them all together in a plastic zip closing bag under the sink and pull out a hook and its matching adhesive strip when I need them. 3M is constantly adding to this versatile line of organization tools and I see they've developed an adhesive strip made for hot, wet areas like the bathroom shower!  They've created wall baskets and hooks for in the more do you have to drill through your tile into the wall to hang items in your shower. Just head down to your local store and pick up what you need. I've seen these at all the major drug store chains, some craft stores, all the hardware stores and of course the big multi department stores like Target and Walmart. I've only seen the refills at Target.

To see the variety of 3M Command items visit their website here:

I am digging the new "spring clips" which come in handy when your refrigerator is aluminum and therefore magnets won't work!

Have you used these? If so, how and did you like them? Know of something better?

Disclaimer: I have never received any samples of these to use for review. This is my honest opinion on the product(s) mentioned as I've used them.

1 comment:

Jackie S. said...

I love these hooks, especially the metal ones!